Don't throw out your Mule Mix

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  Leo Schordje on Sun Feb 15, 2015 4:08 pm

Chris (COH) is right, only ammonium ion or nitrate ion are absorbed by plants, source is irrelevant to the plant. Organic fertilizers are not necessarily slow release, organic fertilizers can be released suddenly - hence the reason manures are supposed to be composted before application. Poultry manure and cow manure when fresh can be ''too hot'', releasing too much of a good thing all at once. Fertilizer, organic or inorganic really doesn't matter to the plant, its all the same chemicals that the plants use.

I have been using and selling (in orchid circles mainly) a coated formulation similar to Osmocote and Nutricoat. The polymer that coats the pellets is designed to release based on temperature. It can even be used in ponds, and will release no faster than in a bonsai pot or houseplant application. The reason is in most nursery settings there can be wide variation in frequency of water, a rainy week could wash all your fertilizer away. Temperature release was designed to reduce fertilizer in run off (which represents waste of money, fertilizer is an expense)

The coating my brand uses will last for 5 months at 60 F (+15 C). 4 months at 70 F (21 C), 3 months at 80 F (27 C) and 2 months at 90 F (32 C). Generally this response, faster release at higher temperatures is exactly what one needs. Plant grow faster when temperatures are in the 80's than when in the 60s, so they will need more fertilizer as they grow faster. The down side is if you are growing in extreme heat, those that grow in desert regions where temperatures are regularly above 90 F, should be cautious and use temperature release fertilizers only when they know they will ave a few months of cooler weather. Or they should use these at lower dose rates during warm weather knowing the release will be quicker. Temperature release is actually an advancement, and improvement in fertilizer technology, it is just a matter of understanding how to use them. In high heat - use a lower dose.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  coh on Sun Feb 15, 2015 4:21 pm

Leo, two questions based on your post:

1) Don't all (or most) of the timed-release fertilizers, like osmocote, have a temperature-dependent release rate? I'm pretty sure that's what I've read. If so, what is different about the fertilizer you are describing? Or am I incorrect, does osmocote just release a certain amount with each watering regardless of the temperature? I'll have to see if I can find the literature I was looking at a while back.

2) What is it about "fresh" manure that can make it too "hot"? High ammonia content or something else? I think it would be safe to say that most of the processed/packaged products we use (such as cotton meal) are relatively slow release, right?

Chris

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  FrankP999 on Sun Feb 15, 2015 4:52 pm

Leo, would you share the name of the time-release you use? Thanks.

Frank

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  0soyoung on Sun Feb 15, 2015 5:17 pm

coh wrote:What is it about "fresh" manure that can make it too "hot"? High ammonia content or something else?

It is because there is pee in the poop. Pee is urine. Urine is urea in water (the water is rapidly lost to evaporation, but redissolved and carried away in solution when the manure is rewetted).

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun Feb 15, 2015 6:21 pm

There is a osmocote type from Israel, the coating is designed to work at 90 deg.F [ 33 deg.C ] and you can get one designed for 8 to 9 months.

Just put out some soyabean to compost and will try that on the more finished trees to see if it can maintain colour, give even growth and anything else.
{ seems that oil bearing beans / peas have higher NPK plus other, than non oil bearing beans / peas ?
Channa / Garbanzo beans semm to be at 3N, and Cow peas / Black eye peas are at 3.1 N 1 P 1.2 K no listing for anything else.]

The 1/3 lawn fertiliser is doing as expected, no growth so far on anyone,, but leaf colour is deep green.

The Fustic, is definitely the tropical equal of the Zelkova, branching is very fine and extremely leaf dense, also very small as reduction goes. Leaves seem to last one month and then fall.
Fustic was placed on the western side where the asphalt yard is hottest to get the growth, which is very fine.

Our night are running at 66 to 68 deg.F [ say 20 deg.C ] might not be much to you guys up north, but with the addition of the dry season and cool breezes, all the trees in landscape are totally defoliating and blooming. Then staying bare for a few weeks. The poui [ Tabebuia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tabebuia ] will do this about three times before the rain falls.

https://www.google.com/search?q=Poui&safe=off&hl=en-GB&rlz=1T4TSHB_en___TT342&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=J-PgVOXGFajlsAS2pIDoAQ&ved=0CCYQsAQ&biw=1093&bih=454

Perhaps it is that one uses composted oil cakes / meal for finished efforts?
Last year the trees that had only compost, took on a slower extension and more or less froze into shape. A little frightening, but with time and experience ?
Ah experience, it has to be slowly gained.
Laters.
Khaimraj

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  Leo Schordje on Sun Feb 15, 2015 7:00 pm

coh wrote:Leo, two questions based on your post:

1) Don't all (or most) of the timed-release fertilizers, like osmocote, have a temperature-dependent release rate? I'm pretty sure that's what I've read. If so, what is different about the fertilizer you are describing? Or am I incorrect, does osmocote just release a certain amount with each watering regardless of the temperature? I'll have to see if I can find the literature I was looking at a while back.

2) What is it about "fresh" manure that can make it too "hot"? High ammonia content or something else? I think it would be safe to say that most of the processed/packaged products we use (such as cotton meal) are relatively slow release, right?

Chris

Each brand has their own trade marked or proprietary system, I can only speak to the 2 I know some detail about. I'm more familiar with Nutricote brand, and their's is definitely a temperature release system. I tested Osmocote and Nutricote back in the 1980s for orchids and did not like Osmocote's inconsistent response, Nutricote was much better controlled with fewer burning issues. Both companies have improved their methods since then. The outfit I use for my product uses a system very similar to Nutricote. I won't say with certainty that all products are temperature release, but I do know that Nutricote and Osmocote are.

Like I said before, if you know that it is temperature that governs release, you can plan for it and use it to good effect. Plants grow faster in the 80 to 90 degree range, so faster release is a benefit at that time. Some plants (but not all) slow down growth at higher temps, this is something you need to plan for by using lower doses or omitting this type of fertilizer if you have to deal with long hot 90+ F seasons.

2 - Yep, urea is in manue, raw ammonia too in chicken manure, and they both are water soluble, giving a heavy dose to plants when first applied. Composting manure allows time to leach out excess and time for microbes to convert some to nitrates. I don't know the exact details but I think this is a 'close enough' approximation.

IBC is not a sales site, if you want to know more about what I have and do you have to PM me, or googgle me and contact me through a more commercial website.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  Leo Schordje on Sun Feb 15, 2015 7:10 pm

Potting media, water quality, water quantity and water frequency, humidity (separate from water issues), temperature, light intensity, and type of fertilizer used, all interact with each other. Changes in any one factor may change what your best choice will be for fertilizer. There is no blanket one type fits all. Though I think a well formulated chemical fertilizer, used at the right dose goes a long way toward the 'one size fits all' concept.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  coh on Sun Feb 15, 2015 8:16 pm

Thanks, Leo, for taking the time to share your knowledge and experience on this subject!

Chris

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  augustine on Mon Feb 16, 2015 6:11 pm

I have great results w turf ace, I mostly mix w pumice and grit depending on species. The only problem was using too much turf ace in a larger training container, stayed too wet. So this wasn't a problem with turf ace but an "operator error."

I also use organic fert but clean the soil at season's end by removing and relacing top layer of substrate.

But as many have stated, it all depends on all the different factors, species, climate, etc.

PS, I've also had a tree repotted in Boons mix, akadama, pumice and scoria and found it to be excellent. Problem is cost of akadama.

Best regards,

Augustine

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  steveb on Sat Feb 28, 2015 12:53 am

Thanks all for the replies. Very informative. I have a lot to learn.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  steveb on Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:09 pm

Thought I'd post an update. I removed the center root so it wouldn't eventually cover the entire rock. I've cut the trunk once and plan on repotting next spring. It is already pushing out of the training box. Still in 100% Mule Mix with some mulch added on the top to reduce water loss. Feel free to comment.


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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  juniper07 on Thu Oct 27, 2016 12:24 am

I can only speak from my experience, and I have had no issues (root problems, etc.) with turface. I think the key is in the watering; turface (any substrate for that matter) can cause problems if you water on a schedule and not by how much the plant needs on a day to day basis.

With 100% turface, you have to water more frequently than most mixes. So if you have a 9 to 5 job and can water only once or max twice a day, then pure turface will cause issues in your plant's root zone.

I just got myself using organic fertilizer (which made a huge difference in my plants' health), maybe next year I'll start using some additive to turface rather than 100% turface.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  steveb on Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:35 am

You are right about pure turface (or Mule Mix in my case, they are essentially the same.)  It does dry out quickly, especially at the surface.  Lately I've been adding about 1/4 part by volume pine bark and that seems to help.

Thanks.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun Oct 30, 2016 4:59 pm

Comments would be -

[1] If you were attempting to trunk thicken - suggestion - would be a few months in a colander and then ground grow.
When the trunk is at the size you want. Dig around the colander and leave in the colander for x months to restart the the fine feeder
roots.

[2] You could try rapeseed fertiliser buttons. They would decay and add back in nutrient and the organic part to the soil mix.
This would then most probably negate the need for mulch.
The mulch is probably already doing the same thing, replacing the organic[ so shhh your not 100 % inorganic Shocked ].
Watering schedule might change as well.
____________________________________

I found this, and when it arrives will do tests.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0006Q0EMW/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o09_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

____________________________________________

It may also be that my mix of say 2/3 inorganic to 1/3 organic by volume, just needs my 1/3 strength lawn fertiliser.
I am researching how P205 attaches itself to compost and it does no good to add on more from an artificial fertiliser with P205.
My aged compost has around 2.0 P205 and may not need more.
Will report back next year.
Laters.
Khaimraj

Remember American fertilisers list P205 and not as the Europeans do P.




















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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun Oct 30, 2016 5:01 pm

Not supposed to be good to add [ not composted ] Pine bark to soil.
Laters.
Khaimraj

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  steveb on Mon Oct 31, 2016 1:18 am

Thanks for the reply Khai.

The height of the tree to the first chop is about 8 inches. I'd like this to be a shohin and under 12 inches tall. This would mean another 4 inches (or half the height to the trunk chop) above the trunk chop. For a tree of this size, do you think the trunk still needs to thicken? If so, I will do as you advise.

I don't have the whole soil thing worked out. I did by some 'real' bonsai soil containing pumice and lava rock that I plan on using next Spring. I'll use it and see how it works. I'll also switch ferts from chemical to organic as well.

Thanks again.
Steve

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:56 pm

Steve,

depends on what you are using in your design as the 2", trunk or the stone zone.
If the stone zone, you may wish to simplify your roots to just a few, say 4 or 6

As usual, experiment on expendables, not the one in the image.
So soil mixes, fertiliser types, and written notes, the memory will forget - okay.

And updates please.
Laters.
Khaimraj

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  augustine on Tue Nov 01, 2016 5:20 pm

Steveb,

Your trident is looking good, very nice work.


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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Wed Nov 02, 2016 12:17 pm

Steve,

The Amazon page -
the Murata brand, supplied by the Joshua Roth company, is nothing more than expelled meal.
Meal sent through a pipe and the oil has been removed.

The stuff smells like food and I can see the birds and squirrels, eating it.

So I would suggest finding a better quality organic fermented or composted seed meal cake.

Now I know why some folk have many problems with the wild life.
Until.
Khaimraj

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  steveb on Thu Nov 03, 2016 11:50 pm

Thank you Khai for your response. I'll start researching organic fertilizers and will stay away from the one you mentioned.

Thanks again.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  augustine on Fri Nov 04, 2016 1:13 pm

If you want to try an organic fert they are readily available. ESPOMA makes a number of products that are avail at garden centers and big box stores and are cheap (the Japanese and bonsai ferts will cost much more). I use Plantone, cottonseed meal and hollytone for acid lovers. You can also buy fish and seaweed emulsion or kelp meal. All good stuff, you can't go wrong.

Personally I use the organics with the emulsions and chemical ferts at half strength. Organics will create a good soil environment.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

Post  steveb on Tue Nov 08, 2016 12:26 am

Thanks for the recommendation augustine. I'll give that a shot.

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Re: Don't throw out your Mule Mix

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